Early in life, I was led to believe that cannabis was unhealthy, and it wasn’t until my early 30’s, when I heard about cannabis as a medicine, that my curiosity was reignited. This led me down a path of self education, where I began to understand how cannabis could be part of a healthy lifestyle. I have since learnt how to use it to improve my own wellness and integrate it into my self care routine. Here are a few lessons that have helped me appreciate this plant for it’s health benefits, despite what I had previously been led to believe.
Cannabis legalization is the freedom of knowledge
The unhealthiest thing about cannabis is the lack of education and understanding around it. Cannabis prohibition blocked research and has prevented individuals from accessing the knowledge needed to make informed decisions around healthy consumption. Now, with legalization around the corner, we have the opportunity to learn how to use cannabis to support our health. It wasn’t until I began to take on cannabis 101 knowledge that I was able to make the right choices around how to consume for my individual needs. As our understanding of cannabis evolves so too do the attitudes surrounding the plant and its many uses.
Cannabis can be compared to food
Depending on the choices you make food consumption can either heal us or harm us. Similarly, cannabis can be used for wellness or it can be misused. It’s easy to become sick by eating the wrong foods, however education around nutrition and an understanding of which vitamins and minerals your body needs can lead to better decision making. Cannabis is made up of compounds called cannabinoids that can help balance the internal system of our bodies – consume too much and the experience may become uncomfortable. Taking the time to understand what’s right for you is the first step to a positive experience with cannabis.
Cannabis is a complex and highly personalized medicine
Cannabinoid therapy is being used as a treatment for a variety of diseases and conditions, many of which have stumped scientists for generations. This conversation was enough to grab my attention. The challenge when using cannabis for medicinal purposes is that each individual has their own unique biochemistry which affects the way cannabis interacts in the body. Some generalizations can be made, for instance, a sativa strain is more likely to provide a more energetic effect than an indica strain, but even then some people may find all strains to be sedative. This amplifies the importance of getting to know your cannabis 101 and beginning your exploration by starting low and going slow.
Education is the answer to the growing pains
Education is all of our responsibility. At the end of the day, widespread knowledge of how to consume cannabis safely is the ultimate form of harm reduction. Cannabis has always been a part of our society but legalization is forcing it into the spotlight and helping us engage in these important conversations. Even if you don’t consider yourself to be a cannabis consumer, there may be someone in your home, workplace or community who may benefit from the knowledge of a safe and healthy approach to cannabis consumption.
Disclosure: The information shared in this post is a personal experience and not to be considered medical or legal advice. Please consult with a health practitioner and seek legal counsel on the cannabis laws in your area.